My Inner Self

My inner self is wounded, bruised, scarred.
It's a soft inner layer of a cracked outer shell.
My defenses are weakened and breaking.
No more is the happily painted outer image
with colorful designs on it.
Now it is a gray, hollow shape
with cracks along the seams.
No more is the structure stable--
the innards show through the holes of the outer shell.
No more does the inner self rejoice in confidence
for it is barely alive: raspy breathing,
chest heaving,
eyes falling closed.
Its battle is almost given up,
but there remains a part of it that wants to keep fighting.
Hopefully, the cracks in the outer shell will heal
and the raspy breathing will become gentle again.
The eyes will open wide, and my inner self will be rejuvenated.
But for now, it is alone.
Wounded, bruised, scarred, it wanders alone in the darkness
searching for the light that will heal it again.

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